The outgoing head of the Justice Department's campaign finance task force is preparing a report for Attorney General Janet Reno on fund-raising abuses in the 1996 elections, the Washington Post reported in Monday's editions.
The newspaper, quoting unidentified officials, said Charles LaBella, the federal prosecutor brought in last September to revitalize the task force, believes sufficient evidence now exists to conclude whether senior Democrats should be prosecuted for conspiring or acting individually to violate fund-raising laws.His report will piece together evidence from dozens of separate investigations to look for any pattern of illegal activity orchestrated by the Democratic National Committee and White House officials during the 1996 Clinton-Gore campaign, according to the Post.
The newspaper reported that LaBella's potential targets included former assistant finance chairman John Huang and others at the DNC, as well as former deputy chief of staff Harold Ickes and others at the White House.
LaBella last month told Reno he wanted to resign to return to his home base of San Diego.
The Post said LaBella's plans to examine the possibility of orchestrated wrongdoing in Democratic fund-raising predated his plans to return to California and reflected a long-standing desire "to take a step back and look for connections between events that have only been examined separately so far."
The task force brought indictments early this year against three Democratic fund-raisers for allegedly soliciting unlawful contributions.
Yah Lin "Charlie" Trie and Maria Hsia have pleaded not guilty and are scheduled for trial later this year.